Cervicogenic headache a common type of headache that is caused by a disorder in the cervical spine (neck region) and its component bone, disc and soft tissue elements. It is categorised as a secondary headache as the pain is perceived in the head while the true source of the pain is from the neck. This is different from migraine as source of pain from migraine headache is from the brain/head. In most cases, people with cervicogenic headache will have a reduced mobility of their neck and aggravated pain with a certain movement of their neck or when pressure applied onto a particular spot on the neck.
Cervicogenic headache can cause symptoms similar to migraine headache such as light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, blurry vision and an upset stomach, however, some common symptoms specific to cervicogenic headache may include:
There are many different conditions that target the neck can trigger cervicogenic headache, these include degenerative conditions such as osteoarthritis, a disc prolapse in the neck, a fracture in the neck or a whiplash injury. Injuries to neck by physical impacts such as fall or sports can also result in cervicogenic headache. Stress, overwork, anxiety, lack of sleep or sleeping badly on incorrect pillow. Lifting heavy weights or excessive lifting.
Furthermore, abnormal postures such as cervical protraction (when you push your chin forward and moves your head out in front of your body), head off to one side or head too far back can put pressure on a specific point on the neck and base of the skull, eventually, these postures will injure your neck and may result in cervicogenic headache.
There are several management options available for cervicogenic headache such as medication, physical therapy and surgery.
Physical therapies such as massage therapy and spinal manipulation through chiropractic care may be effective against cervicogenic headache as they help relax the muscles around the neck and improve its range of motion, which provide extended pain relief and reduces the frequency and duration of the headache. After a spinal manipulation, patients often experience immediate pain relief and headache may gradually disappear. In addition, your chiropractor will provide you with a personalised exercise and stretching programme. Traction has been found to be extremely effective in the management of cervicogenic headaches and can also be applied by chiropractors. Often, the combination of physical therapy and an ongoing exercise regimen produces the best outcome. Chiropractors can provide you with a range of exercises including cervical endurance exercise, to perform at home and when they attend the clinic.
In some severe cases, patients might need surgical procedure to relieve cervicogenic headache. It often involves injection of numbing agent or corticosteroid into the neck region to reduce inflammation and pain. In some cases where the nerve in the neck in compressed, surgeons will perform nerve decompression surgery by releasing all potential sites of compression along the nerve, thereby reduce or eliminate symptoms of cervicogenic headache.
If you are suffering from cervicogenic headache, our experienced chiropractors at Lakeside Chiropractic offer many possible solutions!
At Lakeside Chiropractic, our trained and experienced chiropractors will assist you to recover from cervicogenic headache as soon as possible. We provide soft tissue massage, chiropractic manipulation, dry needling as well as electrostimulation therapy. Lakeside Chiropractic is central to Perth’s northern suburbs including Woodvale, yoking, Jindalee, Wembley Downs, Kingsley, Padbury and Hilary’s and is located in the centre of Joondalup on 3/45 Central Walk. We have a HICAPS terminal on site which means you can claim direct from your health fund on the day of your treatment. We are a Medibank and BUPA preferred provider but we are also able to process claims from HBF, HIF, CU Health, health.com.au, ahm, Defence and Australian Unity Health. Here at Lakeside Chiropractic our staff are well trained and regularly see visitors who they are able to successfully treat. Please call us on 9300 0095 or on the website www.lakesidechiro.com.au via the Book Online Now tab.